The hero of the book is reflecting on the influence a marketed cigarette brand made on people.
"They were sure our cigarettes made them feel better. Idiots, he thought . They were reacting to the brand profile, the chirpy ad song, the product attributes repeated a hundred million times. It all had the substance of cotton candy and the reality or a well-execute magic show. Branding was smoke and mirrors."
I am confused with the underlined sentence. "It all had the substance of cotton candy": What is "it all" here? All that ad?
I suggest it should be "the reality of a well-execute magic show?
Thank you. And what about "it all"?